It was sad to say goodbye to everyone at Arquetopia…especially just after the inaugral opening of the Colleen Friesen Library.
Yes, it’s true! Since, I was the first writer to participate in their artist residency, and because I was the one to suggest that I would like to leave my books behind so that we could create a little sharing library in the lounge, and because the other residents are visual artists with great imaginations and a keen sense of fun…well…it was inevitable.
On Saturday night while we were celebrating Sarah Firth’s 28th birthday at the nearby La Biznaga restaurant, I was presented with a still-sticky, newly varnished placard proclaiming the Colleen Friesen Library. If you look closely in the photo above, you will see the stellar placard above the door. (It is probably worth mentioning at this point that said library consists of a wooden crate with my seven used books stacked inside).
Yesterday morning as I was saying my goodbyes, we had an impromptu ceremony…using garden shears, yellow dingle-balls as a stand-in for a ribbon and the aforementioned placard hastily affixed to the wall with masking tape, I dedicated the library to future readers and writers of Arquetopia.
I’m sure my stirring speech brought a tear to many an eye. (Then again, they could have been having a reaction to Cleo the new resident kitten).
With the library officially sanctioned, I moved on to the next part of my Mexican odyssey. I’ve joined Michele Peterson at Las Mariposas here in Oaxaca and tomorrow we set off on the 7-hour bus ride to her home in Puerto Escondido.
She has warned me that it’s going to be hot, hot, hot in Puerto. But I’m ready.
If I succumb to the heat…it’ll be okay because people(!) I have created a legacy.
Future artists will have a book to read. Perhaps they will add a volume or two to the crate. Maybe, just maybe, they might have to add another crate as the library grows. But whatever happens, there is now proof that I have been on this earth.
I have left my legacy: The Colleen Friesen Library.